The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency, NDLEA, said yesterday that popular actor and comedian, Mr Babatunde Omidina, a.k.a. Baba Suwe who was arrested last Wednesday for allegedly ingesting cocaine in his system would remain in its custody and would continue to observe him even after he had reportedly made his third excretion on Monday night with no traces of drug found in it.
NDLEA’s spokesman, Mr. Mitchell Ofoyeju, explained yesterday that the detained comedian would still be placed ‘under observation’ for now and that further developments on the matter would be communicated to the public.
According to him, “The man (Baba Suwe) is still under our observation. Further details about him shall be made available to the public. It is not our practice to be investigating people on the pages of the newspapers. Whatever the development is, the public will be notified. We don’t want to be discussing the investigation process on the pages of newspapers. He is still in our custody.”
Last Monday, the Director General of the anti-drug agency had said in a television interview that Baba Suwe would be released if the report of the CT scan and his third excretion showed proved to be negative. The agency’s spokesman however said yesterday that the result of the CT was not ready.
Baba Suwe was arrested last Wednesday at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport Lagos as he was about to board an Air France plane to Paris for an engagement. A statement issued by the agency after the arrest claimed that its scanners at the airport showed the comedian as having ingested the drug in his system and he was immediately placed under observation.
Omidina made the first excretion on Friday, two days after his arrest while he made the second and third excretions on Saturday and Monday respectively but with no traces of drug in them.
The scanning machine employed by the NDLEA, is called Soter RS, which was donated by the United States government to the agency in June 2008. The United States bought four OD Security SOTER RS Security Body Scanners for the NDLEA for security operations at Lagos, Port Harcourt, Kano and Abudja International Airports, as part of its fight against international drug trafficking.
The machine is believed to be one of the most sophisticated x-ray body scanning machines available for drug detection.
The SOTER RS Security Body Scanner can undertake a whole body, clothing or body search, detecting everything hidden in or outside the human body within just 10 seconds. It was discovered to be more effective than the previously used intrusive whole body / strip searches, according to OD Security, its manufacturers.
Meanwhile, a planned protest by film practitioners against the continued detention of Baba Suwe has been suspended. Veteran actor, Prince Jide Kosoko, said “We intend to stage a massive protest, but we have been advised by legal practitioners to stay action till the NDLEA has concluded its investigations. Whether they like it or not they owe us that explanation and we shall demand it when the time comes.”
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